Automated System Recovery overview in Windows XP


The purpose of this article is to describe Automated System Recovery in Microsoft Windows XP and to list supported information between the original release of Microsoft Windows XP, Windows XP Service Pack 1 (SP-1), and Windows XP Service Pack 1a (SP-1a).

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Microsoft recommends that you regularly create Automated System Recovery (ASR) sets as part of an overall plan for system recovery so that you are prepared if the system fails. ASR should be a last resort for system recovery. Use ASR only after you have exhausted other options. For example, you should first try Safe Mode Boot and Last Known Good.

ASR is a two-part system; it includes ASR backup and ASR restore. The ASR Wizard, located in Backup, does the backup portion. The wizard backs up the system state, system services, and all the disks that are associated with the operating system components. ASR also creates a file that contains information about the backup, the disk configurations (including basic and dynamic volumes), and how to perform a restore.

You can access the restore portion by pressing F2 when prompted in the text-mode portion of setup. ASR reads the disk configurations from the file that it creates. It restores all the disk signatures, volumes, and partitions on (at a minimum) the disks that you need to start the computer. ASR will try to restore all the disk configurations, but under some circumstances it might not be able to. ASR then installs a simple installation of Windows and automatically starts a restoration using the backup created by the ASR Wizard.

The following table lists whether ASR is supported with the version of Windows XP at the time of backup and at the time of restore.

Build on computer at the time of backupRestore mediaSupported or not supported
Windows XP RTMRTMsupported (Japanese version and Spainish version not supported)
Windows XP RTMSP1 slip-streamednot supported
Windows XP RTM + Update to SP1RTMsupported (Japanese version and Spainish version not supported)
Windows XP RTM + Update to SP1SP1 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP SP1 slip-streamedRTMnot supported
Windows XP SP1 slip-streamedSP1 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP SP1a Slip + SP2SP2 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP SP1a Slip + SP2SP1 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP SP1a Slip + SP2RTMnot supported
Windows XP SP2 slip-streamedSP2 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP SP2 slip-streamedSP1 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP SP2 slip-streamedRTMnot supported
Windows XP RTM + SP2SP2 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP RTM + SP2SP1 slip-streamedsupported
Windows XP RTM + SP2RTMsupported (Japanese version and Spainish version not supported)
Note The Japanese and Spanish versions of Microsoft Windows XP are not supported.

For more information about other recovery options or using backup, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, and then click Help and Support.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • In the Search box, type
      repair overview and then click Start Searching.
    • In the Search box, type
      using backup, and then click Start Searching.

Article ID: 818903 - Last Review: May 22, 2013 - Revision: 1